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New labor chief says job searches should be easier

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - The state labor chief says cutting services at state jobless service centers shouldn't make it harder for out-of-work Tennesseans to find jobs.

According to the Chattanooga Times Free Press, Labor and Workforce Development Commissioner Burns Phillips told the legislative Fiscal Review Committee last week that coming changes should make it easier to search for jobs.

Phillips said the ability to post open jobs over the Internet should simplify searches for work. He also said local nonprofit partners across the state are working with the department.

Among those expressing doubts was House Minority Leader Craig Fitzhugh. The Ripley Democrat said shutting down state-run services at 34 centers and firing 125 state employees decimates career centers just as the recession is ending.